Friday, 24 January 2014

Grow Your Blog

I am taking part in an event called "Grow Your Blog", which is the brainchild of Vicki over on 2 Bags Full. The idea is to discover new blogs and to increase readership of your own blog.


Well here I am. If you haven't visited me before, welcome to "Musings of the Puppet Lady." My name is Janet and I live in Buckinghamshire in the UK. 

I call myself the Puppet Lady because a few years ago I started to knit puppets for a charity called Operation Christmas Child, which sends gift filled shoeboxes to underprivileged children worldwide at Christmas. To begin with I knitted two or three puppets, and gave them to a lady that I had been told was running this charity in my area. The following year she invited me to come along and help out, which I did. I was very impressed when I saw the amount of charity knitting that was used by this charity to fill the shoeboxes - in particular I remember seeing large bin-bags full of dozens of knitted hats. It made my contribution look rather paltry, and I decided that the following year, I would knit more - maybe even a bin-bag full! 

So I set myself a target of knitting 100 puppets in a year. And I have now been doing that since 2009. That's 500 puppets in total. My only rule is that every puppet has to be different! You can see all these puppets if you visit my Puppet Archive page. Over the years I have invented a few special puppets and have written up patterns for them on this blog, which you can find on the Patterns page. I now display a picture of my latest puppet at the top of my sidebar. I find it keeps me motivated to keep knitting, and have already made 12 this year, which is probably a record!

Over time I became more and more involved with Operation Christmas Child, and with the running of a Craft Group, which meets each month to make craft items for the shoeboxes. After a couple of years the lady that organised the appeal in my area moved away and I took over running the charity from her, along with another good friend. I try to post the ideas and activities that we come up with in the craft group, and share these also on other media like Pinterest, Ravelry and Facebook.

My other pastimes include music (I sing in the chorus of a local Philharmonic Society and we are lucky enough to have a super full-strength Orchestra to accompany us.) I also enjoy walking, gardening, cooking, photography, going to the gym, reading and other needlecrafts, and from time to time I share these bits and pieces of my life on this blog.

A couple of years ago my husband and I decided it was time to explore a bit further afield than our immediate local area, and so set ourselves a goal of walking a new stretch of the Thames Path every month. We are still in the process of doing this, and have covered about two thirds of the 184 mile path so far. I try to record each walk in a blog post, although I do have a bit of a backlog, dating back almost two years! But since so many stretches of the Thames are now too flooded to walk, I will be able to go back and catch up over the next few months! 

Thank you for visiting me and I hope that if you find something here that interests you, you will become a follower of 'Musings of the Puppet Lady'. Thank you also to Vicki for hosting this blogging event.


29 comments:

  1. I love your walking goal. Your puppets are cute too. I bet they bring a lot of fun to some little ones.

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  2. hi there, i'm Beth from "E. Lizard Breath Speaks" & a "Grow Your Blog" party volunteer, i'm helping Vicki out by visiting several of the blogs from the link up. so many folks to see & we volunteers are all working together to check you guys out. i want to welcome to the party!!! i sure hope you are having a great day. be sure to go check out some great blogs. there are so many to see. ( :

    i am just amazed at the ladies i have had a chance to meet so far ... you all are working for charities & making such lovely crafty items. so great. i am just wishing i was so talented. i do photography at the moment. i use to sing in the choir as a kid, usually now it is in the shower, car or when i turn on the tunes to clean. have a happy weekend.

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  3. Those puppets are so cute, love the pictures. Have a good weekend.

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  4. Oh my goodness! I ADORE your puppets!!! What a wonderful thing you do!! I stopped by because I was intrigued by the name and I am SO happy I did. :) My grandfather used puppets in his children's sermons at church and I kept them all when he passed away to use with my students. They were special to me when I was a kid (and still are) and I know the many you have made are special to the little ones who receive them. I'll be passing this blog along to my friends that knit too! :) Thanks for the inspiration!!! Happy GYB Day!

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  5. Found you at the GYB party .... Hello!
    I also love to knit and crochet .... spend most of my evenings doing that!
    Love the puppets!!!! :-)
    diane @ thoughts and shots

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  6. Enjoyed your post - enjoyed looking at your puppets :-)

    Thanks for posting!

    ~Val

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  7. Hi I just popped over from GYB. I love the idea of all those puppets! I'll be back to meet them all soon. Eleanor x

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  8. Lovely to meet you, Janet, from a fellow UK blogger :)
    I've become a follower so I can visit your puppets again...

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  9. As a GYB visitor I love the way your knitting the puppets for the boxes.
    Im following you and hope to also knit some of the puppets for my grandkids and for use with pre school children at work.
    have you devised the pattersn yourself? If so, well done! they are such great fun : )
    Lyn

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  10. So nice to meet you at the party! What a wonderful idea. I have always participated in Operation Christmas Child and just love this idea! Thanks so much for sharing. Hugs, Terri

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  11. What a wonderful cause to knit for and your little puppets I know are more than appreciated. I am off to go check them out in your archive. So nice to meet you.

    Hugs
    Caroline

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  12. Thanks for sharing your blog! I'm still trying to work through the list... Please feel free to visit my embroidery blog (in the 1st part of the list).

    aprilsongstress

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  13. Your puppets are precious! I am a new follower of your blog!

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  14. Compliments to you for your donations to kids- what a great way to serve them!

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  15. God bless you for your knitting; that's fabulous and am sure you've blessed many through the work of your hands and heart. Visiting via Vicki's GYBP and enjoyed your post, greatly.

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  16. Your puppets are adorable -- I think I may have to try my hand at one -- I have a special little guy in my life who would love one -- I found you through GYB and I'm following you now!

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  17. Hello from Yukon! I hope you're enjoying this party as much as I do :)
    Evalina, This and that...

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  18. I love what you are doing! I keep thinking of knitting toys for people but then run out of time. I think I will make at least one this year to giveaway I don't have as much time to knit as I want. (I get very distracted by cross stitch and crochet)

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  19. Very cute puppets! What a wonderful idea! Our knit group made bears for The Mother Bear Project. Lovely yarn work you do! Enjoy the blog party! Aloha

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  20. what a generous project. It must keep you very busy but also be very satisfying. I love your work. Happy hopping!

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  21. What a lovely charity--and so many happy children as a result.

    Thanks for stopping by my blog (tidbitsandtreasures2011.wordpress.com) earlier this week.

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  22. visiting you from the GYB party. Love those puppets -- we do Operation Christmas Child too, and the puppets are such a great idea! thanks for visiting me too.

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  23. Hello!!! Thanks a lot for visiting my blog. Such a pleasure to meet you too. It's great to see your blog and hear about your passion with puppets. I also visited the other page of yours with beautiful photographs of scenery. I absolutely adore it. Have a great day and enjoy blogging!

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  24. Your puppets are delightful and for such a wonderful cause! Thanks for visiting me in Singapore : ) A fun blog party - we get to meet new friends around the world!

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  25. Hello from another UK blogger! It is wonderful to share in your puppets and so inspiring to hear how you have used your talent for a charity that is so worthy. Thank you for sharing. x Keli x

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  26. Hi! I'm still visiting from the GYB Party. You are a generous and creative woman. I love your puppies. I didn't know there were locks for the river Thames. I also love walking in nature. ( This sentence doesn't sound good English...) I agree with you, the contact with nature is a great way to beat the winter's blues. Be happy, Ana


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  27. Hello from South Carolina in the USA! It is so nice to meet you and your lovely blog. I have spent a good while here, perusing some of your posts. Your pictures are so pretty and your little puppets are wonderful and they are sure to be well used by many children, around the world. I am familiar with Operation Christmas Child and our church participates in filling up shoe boxes, though I have not been as active in it lately as I should have been.

    It is obvious that you are a lady with much talent and a very big heart and I am glad I found your blog, compliments of Vicki's GYB party. I am still making my way through the list and, though progress is somewhat slow and time sometimes limited, I hope to pay a visit to every one of them.

    I am signing up to follow your posts and I hope you will be able to spend a little time checking out my blog to check things out.

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  28. Hello Janet, I'm a late visitor from GYB what a lovely thing you do with your puppets and I love that everyone is different. I almost never make two of anything so I can completely identify with this. Looking forward to following you and reading more.
    Love and best
    RedSetter
    Craft blog http://gonebeading.blogspot.co.uk/
    Cat blog http://pepsimaxaddict.blogspot.co.uk/

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Thank you so much for taking the time to comment. I really appreciate it.

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